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What Happened

What Happened

I ordered two copies of What Happened, one for me and one for Older Son. Older Son worked tirelessly on Hillary’s campaign, specifically at the Hillary for America – East LA Office. He helped set the office up and helped run it for months leading up to the election. I, like many Americans, thought Hillary was going to win. And then I heard that Comey was reopening the FBI investigation into the emails. I was instantly terrified that all was lost. I remember calling Older Son in a blind panic, babbling about how we had just lost the election. Read more

Madeleine Albright Talent Crush

Madeleine Albright

If ever I needed someone to tell me what to do about North Korea, I would choose Madeleine Albright. Few people know as much about fascist regimes as Albright. Like millions of people, Albright’s life was shaped by the violence of fascist regimes in the early half of the 20th century. Albright was the first female Secretary of State. She also oversaw some of the more controversial decisions the Clinton administration made, both at the U.N. and as Secretary of State. Read more

Intuitive Eating

Intuitive Eating

My therapist gave me Intuitive Eating when I was talking to her about my challenges around parenting and food.  I’ve read a lot of books about healthy eating in my day, but this book is completely different. This book is not about how you should modify your food intake to change your weight or your health, it’s about your relationship with food.  Our culture has inserted itself between humans and their food and it’s mostly been done for profit.  

“Legalizing food is the critical step in changing your relationship with food. It frees you to respond to inner eating signals that have been smothered by negative thoughts and guilt feelings about eating.”

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The Annotated Pride and Prejudice

The Annotated Pride and Prejudice

When I was still following a reading challenge list, the prompt that led to The Annotated Pride and Prejudice was, “A book made into a movie you’ve already seen.” I have to admit that I have seen many, many version of Pride and Prejudice. Movies, as well as a couple of incredibly entertaining mini-series. I have never attempted to read the novel. Why? Well, I’m lazy and also, Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy in the 1995 BBC mini-series is pretty much the best romantic hero ever. I never felt the need to improve on my acquaintance with Jane Austen’s most famous male character. But the second I read that prompt I knew the time had come to be an adult and read the source material for a story I had watched many, many, many versions of. Read more

A kindness of thieves

A Kindness of Thieves

When I was in high school my parents splurged and bought us a brand new set of encyclopedias. In a way, it cemented my family’s move from the lower middle class into the middle middle class. Along with the central heat and air and the washer and dryer we didn’t have to put coins in to operate, the encyclopedias were part of the physical distance my parents were actively trying to put between their children and the financially precarious childhoods they had lived through.

Knowledge will keep you out of poverty. Read more

The Steal

The Steal: A Cultural History of Shoplifting

I wanted to be more engaged with The Steal: A Cultural History of Shoplifting than I was. The problem was not with the author but rather with the lack of concrete information publicly available about America’s shoplifting epidemic. Retailers who pay for the research aren’t inclined to share the findings with their customers.

Available research (scant as it is) regarding shoplifting in America has two clear conclusions. Roughly 10% of Americans shoplift and there is no such thing as a typical shoplifter. Young men of color are arrested more often than any other demographic but when Americans self-reported their shoplifting habits all races and genders are represented. Read more

Together We Rise

Together We Rise

Together We Rise includes as many voices and points of view regarding the Women’s March on Jan. 21, 2017 as possible. It will take years, decades even, to understand what the March meant. But in the here and now, it meant something different to every person who participated.

Where were you on January 21, 2017?” Read more

The Jemima Code

The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks

“When we break the Jemima Code, America’s most maligned kitchen servant, Aunt Jemima is transformed into an inspirational and powerful symbol of culinary wisdom and authority — a role model.”   

-Toni Tipton-Martin

This isn’t a book of recipes, it is a book about books of recipes. It is about the people and the stories behind the books.  And it is a book that leads to more books.  And an outstanding blog. Read more

Bossypants

Bossypants

If you read the blog on Wednesday, you already know that we here at Persistiny love Tina Fey. You will also know that my favorite line from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is, “Last one to the bunker is the mother of whores!” That doesn’t have anything to do with the book Bossypants, I just wanted to keep to my habit of saying that sentence at least once a day.

Should you read Bossypants? Absolutely. Will it improve your life if you do? Probably not. Read more

Reading Challenge

Reading Challenge

After three years as an English major, I thought I was done with reading lists. But a weird thing happened a few years after I graduated. I started to miss prescribed reading. I’m not reading a seemingly endless string of loosely connected stories told by 7 noblewomen and 3 noblemen in an Italian garden as they wait out the plague (The Decameron, I’m looking at you). And I am done with Shakespeare (except maybe Richard III, what a delicious villain).
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